‘Walking Dead’ Season 8 Finale Ratings Lowest Since Season 1

The Walking Dead” Season 8 finale rose week-to-week in the Nielsen ratings but still could not overcome the ratings declines that have plagued it for the past few seasons.

In the Live+Same Day numbers from Sunday, “The Walking Dead” averaged a 3.4 rating in adults 18-49 and 7.9 million viewers. That is up approximately 21% in the demo and 18% in total viewers versus last week. But that is also down 37% in the demo and 30% in total viewers from the Season 7 finale last year.

Season 8 of the series as a whole averaged a 3.4 and 7.8 million viewers in Live+Same Day, down from Season 7’s average approximately the same percentages as the Season 8 finale compared to the Season 7 finale.

Despite the fact the numbers are less than ideal for the show, it was nevertheless the highest-rated program of the night. The show also faced stiff competition on broadcast for the night, including ABC News’ interview with former FBI Director James Comey as well as the ACM Awards on CBS.

The season finales rank as follows (by demo rating):

Season 5 (2015)–8.2 rating, 15.8 million

Season 4 (2014)–8.0 rating, 15.7 million

Season 6 (2016)–6.9 rating, 14.2 million

Season 3 (2013)–6.4 rating, 12.4 million viewers

Season 7 (2017)–5.4 rating, 11.3 million

Season 2 (2012)–4.7 rating, 9 million viewers

Season 8 (2018)–3.4 rating, 7.9 million

Season 1 (2011)–3.0 rating, 6 million viewers

On the bright side, the Season 4 premiere of “Fear the Walking Dead,” which saw “Walking Dead” character Morgan Jones crossover into the sister series, was up in both measures from last year. “Fear the Walking Dead” averaged a 1.6 and 4.1 million viewers on Sunday night. That is up approximately 33% in the demo and total viewers compared to the Season 3 premiere.

“The newness of the narrative is driven by her vision,” Gimple said. “She’s putting different things forward that we haven’t seen before. And she’s also been working on the show since Season 2, so she knows it inside and out. And even this year, when I was working on [‘Walking Dead’ Seasons 8 and 9, and ‘Fear the Walking Dead’], more and more responsibility went to her, so it’s not like she’s jumping into something she doesn’t know. She knows exactly where all the keys are. She’s completely equipped to do a great job.”

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